Academic and Professional Discourse in Translation

AuthorAna-Maria Mangher (Chitac)
PositionPhD in progress, Doctoral School of Philological Studies, Alexandru Ioan Cuza University of Iasi
ISSN: 2067 9211 Interdisciplinary Dimensions of Communication Science
Academic and Professional Discourse in Translation
Ana-Maria Mangher (Chitac)1
Abstract: The translation of specialized texts, represents a challenging process, due to the terminological
complexity as well as the necessity to relate the translation to a certain textual typology. The study will be
divided into two main parts. Firstly, we will comment o n the most relevant peculiarities of specialized texts,
defining some basic concepts in order to identify a few useful aspects in their translation. On the second part,
we will concentrate on the interdisciplinary character of the translation of Medical Discourse as a branch of
Academic and Professional Discou rse, which implies to the same extent, a deep understanding of the field
terminology and the apprehension of the cultural and contextual background of the target reader. In addition to
investigating terminology and appropriately rendering the informative content, the translator has to attempt not
only to make the message intelligible but also to render the meaning for the target public.
Keywords: English for Specific Purposes; Academic and Professional English; terminology; specialized
translation; genre conventions
English specialized discourse represents a significant part of worldwide communication and its
analysis is very significant for Translation Studies. But, before examining some of the most relevant
studies about the particularities of the specialized discourse, we will mention the multitude of
discoursive types which are covered by this term. Hutchinson and Waters (The Tree of ELT, 1987, pp.
17) identify the following branches: English for Science and Technology, English for Business and
Economics and English for Social Studies, English for Academic Purposes (eg. English for Medical
Studies) and English for Occupational Purposes. (eg. English for Technicians).
Characteristics of Specialized Texts
In order to translate a specialized discourse which is submitted to strict crafting regulations and norms,
we must understand which the linguistic particularities of this type of discourse are. Even if there is no
standard definition of the term ’specialized discourse’, we will introduce a synthesis of the most
relevant positions in the field. In Sager’s opi nion specialised languages are semi-autonomous,
complex semiotic systems based on, and derived from general language, their use presupposes special
education and is restricted to communication among specialists in the same or, related fields” (Sager et
all., 1980, p. 230). While analysing the specialized discourse, Gotti adopts a pragmatic approach
which focuses on both extra - linguistic and linguistic parameters. He uses the term specialized
1 P hD in p rogress, Doctoral School of P hilological Studies, Alexandru Ioan Cuza University of Iasi, Address: 11 Carol I
Bvd., 700506, Iasi, Romania, Corresponding author:

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